KēlaHealth scores $12.9M in combined seed and Series A round

The startup uses machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms to analyze a patient’s surgery risk and gives treatment recommendations.
By Mallory Hackett
11:50 am

KēlaHealth, an intelligent surgical-risk-prediction platform, recently closed a combined seed and Series A funding round worth $12.9 million.

Santé Ventures and Intuitive Ventures led the financing, along with a grant from the National Science Foundation Small Business Innovation Research program.


KēlaHealth was founded by a group of physicians from Duke University Health System as a way to reduce avoidable surgical complications.

Complications in surgeries are fairly common, can have serious impacts on the patient's health and in some cases can lead to death. A study from JAMA found that complications happen in about 30% of surgeries. Of those that had complications, 52% of them were described as major complications, and 49% of those were deemed avoidable.

The platform works to reduce these avoidable outcomes by using machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms to assign patients a risk score based on their health information and medical history. From there, it gives intervention recommendations so that surgeons can tailor the treatment plan based on the patient’s risk analysis.

“Our vision is to apply the lessons learned from millions of previous surgeries for the benefit of every patient undergoing a procedure,” said Dr. Bora Chang, the CEO of KēlaHealth, in a statement. “Patients and their families, clinicians, and hospitals deserve the assurance that the risks of any surgery will be safely navigated by surgical teams with the best information available to them at every point in the surgical journey.”


The funds will be used to accelerate KēlaHealth’s expansion into more surgical centers across the U.S., it said in the announcement.


Others in the space using ML and AI to predict risk include the Seattle-based startup KenSci and Silicon Valley-based Lumiata.

Outside of surgeries, Ultromics makes an AI-supported cardiac-decision-support tool that scans through echocardiograms to look for heart disease or other issues.



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